January - 2017 - issue > CXO Insights

Cutting Through the Hype: A Holistic Approach to Robotic Process Automation

Madhukar Tata, Strategic Business Practice Head-Business Transformation Services, Infosys BPO
Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Madhukar Tata, Strategic Business Practice Head-Business Transformation Services, Infosys BPO
A subsidiary of the Infosys, Infosys BPO provides a broad spectrum of integrated end-to-end business process outsourcing solutions/services that delivers transformational benefits to its clients through reduced costs, ongoing productivity improvements, and process reengineering.

The concept of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is fast catching-on in the services sector as much as in the manufacturing sector. In this article we will look at the Business Process Management sector. Many organizations are looking to implement the magic of RPA across their processes to dramatically lower costs, enhance quality, enable rapid scaling, and improve processing time. While many have been quick to jump onto the bandwagon, there have been many instances where RPA has delivered only modest gains. And so, is all the buzz surrounding RPA just hype? Definitely not, but with a qualifier. RPA can deliver tremendous results - the key is to see it not as 'the' tool, but look at it as one powerful tool that works best in conjunction with other tools. Let's look at some key challenges in automation to understand this better:

1) Existing Processes Are neither Harmonized nor Standardized

The scale and complexity of today's global operations demand nuances for processes for multiple reasons; be it by country, product type or lines of business. This in turn increases the degree of complexity in automation wherein multiple end algorithms are needed, given the combinations and unique process flows. An example of this complexity - a leading hi-tech company was faced with this challenge while automating its channel incentive payments. Every region had its own variations for the payment calculation and reconciliation processes, and the partner needs were different.

2) Upstream & Downstream Processes Need To Be Changed To Enable Better Interfacing

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